Is your child scampering to play outdoors and enjoy the summer sun? Before taking them out, make sure that their skin is well protected. Overexposure to the sun’s UV rays and the extreme heat can potentially damage their skin. Here is what you can do to keep your little one’s skin well protected this summer.
1. Avoid exposing infants to direct sunlight.
The American Academy of Pediatrics strongly advises against exposing infants six months old and below to direct sunlight. If you cannot avoid this, dress your infants in clothes with breathable, lightweight, and long-sleeved materials. Likewise, make sure to move your child to a place with shade or use an umbrella or a stroller with a sun cover.
2. Apply child-friendly sunscreen.
The sun emits UV rays that could damage the skin and even cause skin cancer. To avoid this, apply sunscreens with an SPF of 30 and up on your child at least 15 minutes before allowing them to head out.
In addition to UV-protective clothing and shade, parents need to look for the two approved ingredients on the label: titanium oxide and zinc oxide. To ensure full protection, reapply every two hours and pick a water-resistant sunscreen to see to it that your child’s skin is still protected even if he swims or perspires.
3. Limit your child’s exposure to the sun.
While your child can indeed obtain Vitamin D from the sun, this is only true for limited and certain hours of the day. Set ground rules for your child; do not allow them to stay under the sun between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. During these hours, the sun’s rays are too intense for their skin. Setting a time when they could go out also encourages them to wake up early. You can also think of ways on how to keep them busy indoors when the sun is at its hottest.
4. Choose suitable clothing.
Your child’s clothing should be breathable, especially during the summer. It will prevent them from developing rashes. Cotton is an ideal material for your child’s clothing, because it is both cool and protective. You can also find outerwear for children with UPF or Ultraviolet Protection Factor.
5. Keep your little one protected from head to toe.
This means including parts of their body that parents tend to overlook—their scalp, the skin around their eyes, ears, cheeks, chin, and the back of their neck. Don’t forget to get them breathable hats or caps. You can let them choose what design they want to encourage them to wear those all of the time. A wide-brimmed hat will provide more protection not only for your child’s scalp but also for his face.
Your child’s eyes need protection too. When exposed to the sun, eyes can develop cataracts later on. Since the skin near the eyes is thinner, it is more sensitive to damage. Make sure that the sunglasses you will choose for your child provides UV protection.
6. Remind them to drink lots of water.
Expect your child to excessively sweat during the summer, with the vigorous activities and the intense heat, thus sufficient hydration proves imperative. Have your tot constantly drink water. It is beneficial for keeping your child’s skin healthy because it boosts healing, especially if your child developed sunburns.
7. Protect them from insect bites.
Going outdoors exposes your child to harsh elements. Aside from the harmful rays of the sun, staying outside also exposes your little one to insect bites, which are notorious for causing itchiness or allergies. Choose baby- or child-safe insect repellents. You can find a good variety of products that offer optimal skin protection such as soy-based bug sprays, lotions, or even patches or those with oil of lemon eucalyptus extract.
Protect Your Child’s Skin This Summer
Make the summer season more memorable for your kids by ensuring they are well protected from sunburn, blisters, and itchy skin. We, at Children’s Skin Center, specialize in pediatric dermatology and can help address your child’s skincare needs especially during the summer.